SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ – The players, coaches and managers of the South Plainfield High School (SPHS) Wrestling Team were recognized for their success during the 2017-2018 season and presented with proclamations at the borough council’s June 18 meeting. 

The team, which is comprised of students in 9th through 12th grade, finished the season with a record of 20-7 and earned the honor of being named Group III State Champions for the third consecutive year. 

In recognizing the players, coaches, and managers, Mayor Matt Anesh commended them for their ‘numerous and commendable’ achievements, their ‘steady, persistent progress,’ and their ‘commitment to the sport.’ Additionally, Anesh proclaimed June 2018 as South Plainfield High School Wrestling Month in the Borough of South Plainfield.

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“We’d like to thank the community and the town for letting us reach our goal,” SPHS senior and team captain Joseph Heilmann on behalf of the wrestling squad. 

Head Coach William Pavlak extended thanks to the mayor, council and South Plainfield community. “We’d like to thank you for having us and honoring us here. We are proud to be here,” said Pavlak, adding, “Thanks to all who provided us [financial] support and those who have come to matches.” 

In addition to taking home their third state championship title in as many years, the 2017-2018 wrestling team was named Central Jersey Group III Sectional Champions, Greater Middlesex Conference Champions, and Greater Middlesex Conference Red Division Champions. They also placed third in the 12th Annual Henry Boresch Duals and hold a new state record winning the District 14 Team Championship for the 34th consecutive year. 

For 2017-2018, the SPHS Wrestling Team was ranked No. 14 Team State of New Jersey (NJ Writers Association); No. 15 Team State of New Jersey (Coaches Ranking); No. 15 Team State of New Jersey (NJSIAA/Rothman); No. 14 Team State of New Jersey (Star Ledger); No. 1 Team Group III (Star Ledger); No. 1 Team Middlesex County (Star Ledger); No. 1 Team Area – (Home News Tribune); No. 2 Team Area (Courier News); and No. 3 Team Region 4 (State Coaches Ranking). 

Additionally, four members were named Morris Knolls Champions, four were undefeated wrestlers at Virginia Duals, and four were named GMC Conference Champions. The team also included nine individual District Champions, 11 Regional Qualifiers; six State Qualifiers (Atlantic City); and two State Place Winners. The team’s senior career record is 219-84 with the current senior record at 78-54. 

“The program continues to be a premier power in New Jersey,” said South Plainfield’s Athletic Director Kevin McCann told TAPinto South Plainfield. “With the support of the community and school system, we look for continued success from our wrestlers in the upcoming years."

The 2017-2018 SPHS Wrestling Team was led by Pavlak and Assistant Coaches Steve Johnston, Michael Jakubik, John Foscolo, Steve Giordano, William Hamilton, Tyler Hunt, and Craig Salvatore with support from Managers Natalie Garcia and Briana Noriega. The team includes seniors Joseph Heilmann, Frank Mannino, Michael Marrero, Joseph Nardacci, Xavier Nunez, Anthony Rendon; juniors Alexander Amato, Zachary DelVecchio, Thomas Fierro, Marc Giordano, Brenden Hedden, David Loniewski, Luke Niemeyer, Divon Pender, Joseph Sacco, Sebastian Santos; sophomores Gabriel Mont; and freshmen Kenneth Clevenger, Julian Medina, Thomas Renna, Xavier Santos, and Anthony White. 

© TAPinto South Plainfield, 2018. This article may be copied or shared online, but may not be reproduced or altered in print or any other media without written permission of TAPinto South Plainfield.

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